What many people seem to overlook is that decision-makers at many levels must act in what they believe is the best interest of the US. When the obvious possibility of solving a serious problem quickly by way of torture is presented, my bet is that many lower-level deciders would condone and aid the torture, and accept the possibility of punishment for it if they are ever caught, and the higher-level deciders in the chain would do all they could to look the other way or obfuscate the situation as much as possible. Especially if important problems get solved.
That this is so is quite obvious. We have tortured, despite all prohibitions in place for a long time.Comment Posted By mannning On 14.01.2009 @ 19:12
I suppose it all depends on whose words you believe. Degrading Hamas to virtually zero was a stated objective.
In that, I suggest, they have not succeeded, nor have they been able yet to prevent Hamas from resuming rocket attacks after any so-called peace settlement has been agreed, because that would require the destruction of the military arm of Hamas and the supply sources such as Iran and supply lines for Hamas' military operations from Egypt, not to mention the abandonment of the long term objectives of Hamas itself.
I further suggest that one of their real objectives is to turn the Gaza population against Hamas, not for the love of Israel, of course, but to stop the bloodshed and destruction in Gaza caused by Hamas to begin with, in many Gazian eyes. This has not yet happened, either, and is probably a forlorn hope.
The war goes on.Comment Posted By mannning On 9.01.2009 @ 20:55
Again a correction: We have given the Egyptians 50 billion dollars since 1975, not that amount per year. Still, that is a lot of money washing ashore in Cairo.Comment Posted By mannning On 9.01.2009 @ 15:18
Correction: The origin of Whahabbism is not in Egypt, perhaps more in Saudi Arabia, from what I can read, but this cult has made significant inroads into the population of Egypt, and was apparently the mind behind the Muslim Brotherhood.Comment Posted By mannning On 9.01.2009 @ 15:12
re: #7 Me:
Really? How do you think that insurgents, arms, ammo, rockets, explosives, and supplies get into Gaza? Could it be through the tunnels into Gaza and Palestine from Egypt? Do you believe that Egypt is ignorant of the supplies that flow through their country to Hamas?
Egypt wants the golden thread to the US to remain attached, but otherwise, will support Hamas under the table, and claim deniability of any wrong-doing.
Egypt is the birthplace of the Muslim Brotherhood and Wahabbism. That should tell you something about how most Egyptians think. A 50 billion dollar per year bribe from the US is going down the tubes there, in my opinion.
Just how many such nation bribes can we afford, simply to constrain such people from attacking Israel--until they are good and ready, as before in '73? We do ship boatloads of money to Lebanon, Palestine, Jordan, and Egypt, as well as Israel, to promote peace and prosperity in the region.
Now we are getting the payback for an ineffective bribery policy, and it will get worse, in my opinion. Very little of all this money trickles down to the level of the ordinary citizen in these nations. But they do manage to buy the tools of war, don't they?
Could it be that we are indirectly financing the retooling of the ME for war because of our humanitarian idealism and the wiles of the ME mentality? It has been a sort of "when in doubt, spend money" philosophy with few checks and balances on where the river of dollars go.Comment Posted By mannning On 9.01.2009 @ 14:48
What is there to talk about with Hamas anyway?
Giving them part of our treasury to cease and desist in attacking Israel? That one works well for perhaps a year or so. Siding with Hamas on Israel giving up the rest of their land, piece at a time? Ensuring that all of Israel is within easy range of mortars and rockets? What?
Hamas is not seeking peace. They are seeking to destroy Israel. Israel is seeking the destruction of Hamas infrastructure in Gaza, to stop the missiles from raining on Israel.
I hear it now. "What, O Hamas, do you want to make peace," asks Obama. "Destruction of Israel," says Hamas.
"I see," says Obama, "is this non-negotionable?"
"Yes", says Hamas in a moment of absolute candor, "but, if you want to pour a few billions into Palestine real soon now (which you are running out of rather rapidly), we will go on with our attacks with a much happier face, and have far better arms that we can buy from Russia. A pause in attacks? Certainly, while you pay us enough, quickly enough, before you are broke, to arm us with some of Iran's latest rockets as well. A better life for our people in Gaza? Oh yes, but only after we finish with Israel."
"Oh!", says Obama. "I, I, I, that is, ah hum, well......is there no hope for peace here?"
Hamas: "No. Not until Israel is gone!"
Or, not until Hamas is gone.Comment Posted By mannning On 9.01.2009 @ 10:59
The fact that you won is irrelevant to my main point which is most people could care less about the issue in these times of crisis. ed.
The fact that we are in a deep financial crisis is not and should not be linked with what is a moral or Biblical issue to many people.
While you may have better resources for counting noses regarding gay marriage pro and con today, it has been on the average a 70%/30% con issue in the many states that have addressed the issue in the past few years. For them, the issue is settled in law, and they can turn their attention to more important things. That is decidedly not the same thing as no longer caring about the issue, as you imply.Comment Posted By mannning On 23.12.2008 @ 21:46
I skip 24 and I skip your summaries, so whatever...nothing against 24 per se, you see.Comment Posted By mannning On 26.12.2008 @ 21:11
There are many scientists that oppose the current mad dash to restrict CO2 emissions from our factories and automobiles. A massive number of scientists have signed a petition denouncing the hysteria and absolving CO2 from any major impact on our climate. This petition is still open for those who wish to join the effort.
The link is:
In addition, under the Senate minority committee of the Environment and Public Works Committee, headed by Senator Jim Inhofe, the minority staff has compiled yet another list of scientists that do not believe CO2 is causing global warming. Many of these scientists have published a statement for the record voicing their specific objections to the current hysteria.
This effort is documented here:
At the very least, it is clear that Global Warming from manmade CO2 sources is not a settled scientific issue. It is also clear that CO2 is not in itself the threat it has been made out to be. The science of climate prediction is in its infancy, and attempts to predict global temperatures over a hundred-year period are simply laughable.Comment Posted By mannning On 12.12.2008 @ 16:47
1. Israel will attack Iran when they are ready. They will have to make a sustained air assault over many days, since they will have to suppress Iranian air defenses, command centers, and missile launch sites. It will not be one single massive raid on the nuclear sites.Comment Posted By mannning On 6.12.2008 @ 01:58
2. The IAF will not respect Iraqi airspace.
3. The US will be complicit in the attack, first, because we will not stop the IAF, and second, because we will eventually, if not immediately, be forced to join the attack.
4. We will be forced to join because we cannot let Israel fail, let her air force be decimated in Iran, and hence unable to control their own airspace effectively.
5. We will be forced to join also because we cannot let Israel be overrun by Syria, Hisbollah in Lebanon, and Hamas in Palestine once there is little IAF air support.
6. We will join because we will be blamed with Israel in the Arab world regardless of any denials we might try, and we will suffer heavy reprisals that we cannot ignore. Since the Iranian facilities are located close to civilian populations, there will be significant casualties that will be used to blame the US. After all, it will be observed that the attack aircraft were of US manufacture.
7. Mr Obama will have to choose between joining the war or letting Israel be srangled to death. I believe he will choose joining, not writing off our friends. His attempt a jaw-jaw in the face of a shooting war will be futile.
8. We would be well advised to join the planning now. It is my guess that we already have, but quietly.